Monday, 30 June 2014

Prehistoric People Were Much More Progressive Than The Image That We Have Today by Satomi S

              We tend to have a stereotyped image that prehistoric people were primitive. More particularly, their activity area was narrower than that of ours today because the seas prevented prehistoric people to move freely between every continent and we tend to think they did not have so high skills for sailing. However, many of the new findings disproving our typical images of prehistoric age these days. In my opinion, prehistoric people could navigate easier and trade more actively than the image that we have had for a long time. There are two main reasons for this. First, prehistoric people had high quality skills to sail to the places which they wanted to go to. Second, they traded a lot of wider variety of goods than we have estimated for a long time.
              First, prehistoric people had high quality skills to sail to the exact place where they wanted to go to. According to ancient wisdom (n.d.), in Polynesia, prehistoric people navigated their canoes by many signs of the sky and the ocean. In addition, in Mexico, the magnetic square fragment was found. It was polished, and the age that was used is 1,000 BC, the Olmec age. It seems to be used to serve as a directional finder. So there seems to be no problem for navigation in prehistoric age.
              Second, prehistoric people traded much wider variety of goods than we have expected for a long time. According to Manufacturing, (Kosugi Y., Taniguchi Y., Nishida Y., Mizunoe K. and Yano K., 2007, pp. C1, C4) in Japan, archaeologists had estimated prehistoric people traded stone tools including obsidian, but didn’t have considered other goods. However, these days, it is revealed that they traded not only stone tools but also lacquer wares, shellfish products, vermilions, natural asphalts, wooden goods and so on. This is a typical case that we have regarded prehistoric people as not so active to trade, but this time, it also gives us the new image that they traded many goods actively.
              In conclusion, prehistoric people moved wider and traded more actively than we have estimated for a long time. We tend to see the prehistoric age’s culture was inferior to what it was in reality because we live in mass production and mass consumption society, so we are paralyzed and now we can no longer think about society which is no benefit of the technology. However, a lot of the latest prehistoric studies show that they lived in a higher cultural level than prejudices that we have had. We had better change our point of view of the prehistoric world. In addition, I want these similar cases to increase so that more people of today will become interested in prehistoric people and feel close to them because they are our ancestors to the core. I think it is good to give more than a passive thought to our distant ancestors.
(481 words)

Ancient Wisdom (n.d.). Navigation. Retrieved 21:50, June 8, 2014, from

小杉康,谷口康浩,西田泰民,水ノ江和同,矢野健一 編, (Kosugi Y., Taniguchi Y., Nishida Y., Mizunoe K. and Yano K. Ed.) ,(2007), 『ものづくり(Manufacturing)

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Using animals in laboratory experiment are necessary by Shun T

 I agree with using animals in laboratory experiment. Many people would oppose my opinion because of animal rights, love for animals, and others. But I think these opinions are contradict. First of all, our society needs medicines and biotechnology. If we cannot use animals for medical experiment, we must use human in laboratory experiments if we want to develop our medical and biotechnology. But we must not do these experiments. Conversely we use animals in laboratory experiment in order not to use human for this. So if we wish to benefit from medical and biotechnology, there is no other way than using animals in laboratory experiment.  Second reason is, if we should not use animals in laboratory experiment, we should not eat animals. Certainly, killing animals is cruel, but we have to do so because we cannot help but live without eating any food. Finally, if we should not use animals in laboratory experiment, I think we cannot use leather bags. We must use many consume products and these are essential for our life. For example, I use leather gloves and leather balls for baseball. I cannot think I must not use gloves balls. And in the shopping mall I see many leather bags in bag shops. These are seemed selfishness, but we use many these products and these benefit us. So we cannot live without these substances. Of course I hope using animals in laboratory experiment should be as little as possible. But medicine, food, biotechnology are essential for our society. So we have to use animals in laboratory experiment. 

Nomads are not only destroyers but also protectors of cultures by Shun T

The nomads were regarded as evil and stupid tribes for a long time. There were many nomads who have conquered the world. The Hun, the Mongol, the HsiungNu(匈奴), and the Turks are the principal examples of them. Of course they have attacked many areas in Eurasia, conquered pastoral people, and some groups destroyed their cities. So Russians especially have called them “Tartaros”, which means god of hell because of their conquered memory. It is a fact that nomads have controlled most part of the world for a long time. But many cultures have been assimilated and developed under nomads’ regimes. They are not only civilization destroyers but also protectors and creators of culture. Prejudice against nomads is wrong. We should know nomads more.
              First of all, nomadic regime have maintained and protected trade routes. And they encouraged tradespeople to trade freely in conquered area. For this, official and private trades have been developed among the many cities under their government. For example, Mongol government maintained the Silk Road in 13th. They protected caravans under their cavalry and set up Jamuka(駅伝制:ジャムカJamuka), which is the relay system that has many stations having relay horses.
              Second, nomadic hegemony lasted for a long time. For instance, the Ottoman Empire, which consisted of Turkish people, ruled the main part of West Asia and east Europe from the 14th century until the 19th century. The reasons why their regime lasted for a long time were, that they had powerful forces and adopted intelligentsia in conquered lands. They create hybrid nations by nomadic power and pastoral knowledge.
             Finally, nomadic governments didn’t convert conquered people to any religion unlike Christianity. Nomadic governments only ruled people who were conquered and collected taxes from them. Moreover, their Khans (medieval ruler of the Turks and the Mongol) converted themselves to religions in the conquered lands, for example, Islam and Buddhism. Religions like Islam and Buddhism were protected by the Mongol or the Ottoman government and many religious cultures were developed under the nomadic regimes.
             I think Prejudice against Nomads should be revalued. We tend to think nomads are terrible, evil, and stupid tribes. But looking back the history, we may reconsider the evaluation of nomads. They have governed extensive area and adopted local intelligentsias to rule. Moreover they didn’t prohibit local people to believe in their own religions, so many religious cultures developed in under their government. Nomads are not inferior and brutal people.

My life at the Tsukuba by Shun T

My life at the University of Tsukuba is very satisfied and very busy. I belong to many groups, so I have many tasks and I have relationships with many people.
First, I have much assignments and I must prepare for foreign language lessons. I take lessons in Latin and Garman. In these classes, I read historical literatures. I spend much time to read Latin and German sentences, so I need much time to prepare for these lessons. Second, I do a part-time work on weekends because I don’t have enough money to live. My part time is over 15 hours in all. But my colleagues are so kind, so I don’t want to quit work.   
Other reason is that I belong to baseball team. When we go to games, we spend much time. For example, we usually go to Hachioji stadium, it takes 6~8 hours by round-trip. And we have league games on weekdays, so we are absent from our class on game’s day. But I like baseball very much, and I get rid of stress by playing baseball. In addition, we go to eat evening meal with my teammates after training. That is very fun.  

For these reasons, I’m very satisfied with my life. Though my life is very busy, I enjoy everything in my life. 

The best experiment of my life by Shun T

 When I was last grade in high school, I pitched a practice game. The game was most excited in my life. In the game, I pitched 6 innings. Surprisingly, I did not lose point, and struck many batters out. At this game, I could pitch for the first time in my last grade in high school.
              We went to expedition for this practice game. We have two games in the day. The first game, the team humiliated us. So they maybe looked down on us, and substitute came out. When I started in the second game as pitcher, I was very excited because I wanted to put out the team.   
I feel my pitching was so good. So I was very glad to pitch the game despite losing the game because the opponent team was so powerful enemy. The team often participates in the national tournament, so my result was completely satisfactory for me. I pitched to the best of my power in this game.
              I could pitch for the first time in my last grade in high school. Until this game, I was not confident to pitch. So I thought my pitching skill was enough to play any other teams.        
              That I could pitch the game was so pleasant because I couldn’t pitch for prolonged period because I injured my elbow. My doctor said “you can’t pitch for long time, maybe one or two years”. But I could pitch and I gave good result.      

For these reasons, the game was most good experience for me. Since the day, I started in many games as pitcher, and I became “Ace”. So this game made me Ace and my pitching good. This is my best memory in my life.  

Why I decided to come to the University of Tsukuba by Shun T

There are several reasons that I came to University of Tsukuba. First of all, I wanted to study history in Middle age of Europe, though my interest changed in this University. So, anyway, I wanted to go to Faculty of Literature. University of Tsukuba has it. Therefore I wanted to come here. Second, the subjects of the admission examination matched me. I am not good at mathematics bad good at Japanese and history. Of course, other Universities’ and colleges’ subjects matched me, but my study skill didn’t go with them. Thirdly, University of Tsukuba is highly-selective university for me. Highly selective universities are, for example, University of Tokyo, Kyoto University, Osaka University, etc… The next reason, I was interested in anthropology, which is comparative culture college’s course. So I went to comparative culture college. I wanted to study history, but I also wanted to know what is human. So the course looked to be very attractive for me. The most importantly, my teacher advised me to go to University of Tsukuba. Until my teacher did so, I didn’t decide school of choice and I didn’t know this university. The teacher said me, “If you study history and what is human, comparative culture college in University of Tsukuba maybe fit you. The college treats many researching methodology, so you can widely study your interest.” The words made me go to University of Tsukuba. For these reasons, I study in University of Tsukuba now.

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

The Hundred Poems by One Hundred Poets should be valued in Utsunomiya by Natsumi S

      The Hundred Poems by One Hundred Poets is very famous in Japan and it is called “Hyakunin Issyu”. Some people played the Hyakunin Issyu card game in elementary school and some people may remember all of the hundred poems for the card game. In fact Utsunomiya has relation to Hyakunin Issyu, but people don’t know this well and the connection to the poems is only playing card games. I think the hundred poems by hundred poets should be valued much in Utsunomiya for two reasons. First, it is a pity that many people don’t know that the start of these famous poems is in Utsunomiya. Second, by knowing this story the education of Japanese can be improved.

      It is a pity that many people don’t know that the start of these famous poems is in Utsunomiya. The hundred poems by one hundred poets was consisted by poems of many famous people who are from the Nara era to the Kamakura era and these poems were chosen by Fujiwara Teika who was the very famous poet. Teika was asked to choose a hundred great poems by one hundred poets to decorate the fusuma of the mountain cottage in Ogura by Utsunomiya Yoritsuna. Therefore Utsunomiya has to do with the Hyakunin Issyu. Moreover to tell the truth, the cultural things of the ancient era are not many in Utsunomiya because in the ancient era the center of culture was Kyoto. So the connection to culture in Kyoto is very important and it should be valued much more.

      By knowing the history of the hundred poems by hundred poets, the education of Japanese can be improved. In the research of National Institute for Educational Policy Research in 2002, the 70 % of students don’t like ancient writings. From this research, it can be said that many students turn away from ancient writings. Then the Hyakunin Issyu is very good teaching materials because these are the greatest poems by the greatest poets. So if students have a sense of closeness to Japanese literature from knowing the history of the Hyakunin Issyu, education of Japanese especially ancient writings can be improved much more.

      To conclude, I think that the hundred poems by hundred poets should be valued more in Utsunomiya. These poems are the cultural heritage of Japanese literature and Utsunomiya and this can be used for education of Japanese. The poems are one of the greatest works of Japanese literature and this should be known by more people.   


My opinion about using the death penalty by Chiaki K.

              I am against using the death penalty as a form of criminal punishment. There are three reasons. First of all, the death penalty is not enough as a deterrent to crime. It is said that the death penalty is a good deterrent, but there is no reliable data that proves that the death penalty decreases the number of dreadful crimes. Also, I think that the deterrent to crime is not only the death penalty but also, for example, life imprisonment. In other words, the death penalty is not a special means to deter crimes, so the death penalty is no excuse for killing a person. In addition, there is a economic problem to continue the death penalty. When the defendant is sentenced to death, it costs enormous amounts of money for retrial and other things, so we can’t save money. Also, in Japan, while prisoners make money by their work at prison, condemned criminals don’t work at detention rooms and they don’t make them. The money that prisoners make become the profit for nation and helps to support victims. So, by abolishing the death penalty, the economic burden for trial becomes lighter and we can support victims and their families by the money that is saved and that prisoners make. I think that it is more important to support victims and their families than execution, so we should save money by abolishing the death penalty. Finally, there is a risk that the judgment is false. For example, in 25 states of America, 124 condemned criminals were released by 2007 because the truth that they are falsely accused became clear before their execution. Like this, there is a possibility that the decision of the death penalty will be reversed. Even if the condemned criminal is actually innocence, the death penalty cannot be redone and it becomes only murder. So, I think that the death penalty should not be executed because of the possibility that the judgment is uncertain. For these reasons, I believe that the death penalty should be abolished.

The reasons why I chose the University of Tsukuba by Chiaki K.

              There are four reasons why I decided to come to the University of Tsukuba. First, Tsukuba City is near my home town, Iwaki City. I like my home and my home town, so I thought that my university should be near, so I could go back easily. Secondly, the University of Tsukuba is a national university. School expenses of a national university are cheaper than that of private universities, so the burden to my parents is lighter. I think that lightening the burden to my parents is a filial duty. Thirdly, the University of Tsukuba is a big university. This university is a good place for studying because it has good facilities for study. Especially the very big university library is the best facility for me because I will major in literature. Finally, I thought that I can study widely at the College of Comparative Culture of the University of Tsukuba. I want to study about myth and literature with myth for their motif, especially Western classics because I like a mythical motif. In addition, I am interested in Western arts with mythical motifs and European Folklore. When I looked at the web site of the College of Comparative Culture, I thought that I could study all that I wanted to at this college, so I was attracted to it. For these four reasons, I chose the University of Tsukuba to study.


The Meaning of Studying Western Classics by Chiaki K.

              The study of Western classics includes mainly Greco-Roman literature about various fields such as myth, philosophy or history, the Old Testament or other Christian documents. Because they are written in Ancient Greek or Latin which have a wide influence, there are very many documents which are studied. Many people, for example, professors or teachers say that the Western classics are the basis of Western culture. I think that classics are very meaningful and attractive. There are two main reasons for this. First, studying classics is beginning to understand the culture of the West which built the modern world system. Second, the view of the world of the Western classics has fertile images.

              Studying classics is a beginning to understand the culture of the West which built the system of the modern society. The basis of the modern world lies in the modern philosophy which supports the modern Western system, and there are two sources of the modern philosophy. One is the Greek idea and the other is the faith of the Hebrews. As Iwata (2003, p.) says, modern philosophy in Europe is the development of these two sources, the rebellion against them, or the transformation of them. So, to understand radically the idea ruling the modern society, we need to understand its source, the Greek idea and the faith of the Hebrew, by studying classics. So, classics is very meaningful to study for us living in the modern society.

              Another reason why classics is the study worth studying is that the view of the world of the Western classics has fertile images. Images of Greek gods expressed in works of Ancient Greek or Roman epic poets supplied the inspiration for many writers and artists and they are used as a theme or motif of many drama or pictures. For example, the story of Pyramus and Thisbe from “Metamorphoses” by the roman poet Ovid was the motif of Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet”. Of course, stories in the Bible are used as a theme of many works, too. So, it may be said that we can develop our sensitivity when we study classics.

              Classics is a meaningful study for us and it attracts people for a long time. It is a beginning to understand the modern world based on the modern Western philosophy. Furthermore, it has fertile imagines and supplied inspiration for people from way back. Classics should be studied more positively in Japan now.

405 Words


Iwata, Y. (2003), Yoroppa Shiso Nyumon, Tokyo, Iwanami Shoten, Publishers.